Welcome to Smugglivus 2011! Throughout this month, we will have daily guests – authors and bloggers alike – looking back at their favorite reads of 2011, and looking forward to events and upcoming books in 2012.
Who: Lev AC Rosen, SF writer, whose first book, All Men of Genius was published this year.
Recent Work: The aforementioned All Men of Genius which we both read and LOVED.
Give it up for Lev, folks!
Oh, the Holidays. Christmas, Hanukah, Kwanzaa, Solstice, whathaveyou: a time for gift giving (and ritual animal sacrifice if you’re going oldschool with your solstice celebration). But figuring out which gift to give whom is such a hassle, isn’t it? And so you’ll find that on many of your favorite shopping websites, Gift-Giving Guides are popping up all over. These guides divide your intended-gift-receiver into various categories by age, gender, price, and personality types, such as “Green Guru,” “The One Who has Everything,” “Glamour Girl,” and “Geek.” But such divisions are arbitrary and vague. So I am here to offer you a more precise, and realistic gift-giving guide, based not on categories like “do-it-yourselfer” but on real descriptions of the people you know.
(Also, please note that though I used gendered pronouns, these descriptions can apply to anyone of any gender-identity)
For Your Friend Who Keeps Saying He’s Going to Go to Occupy Wall Street, but You Both Know He Never Will:
So he can feel political… but also pretend like it’s really a joke if someone tries talking politics with him.
For Your Older Relative Who Has Just Discovered Facebook and Uses it to Constantly Post Photos of Her Pet:
Then your zany relative’s pet photos will totally outshine (in both weirdness and glamour) your friends relatives zany cat pictures.
For Your Younger Relative Who Grew Up With Facebook and Has Recently Hit Puberty and is Posting Photos He Will Regret Later In Life:
Besides being one of the best things on TV, this show shows time and time again how in the facebook age everything can come back to haunt you. Alternatively, you can begin commenting in strange ways on the photos (I suggest using the phrase “that is one delicious looking puppy” on all inappropriate photos) – this will hopefully make him uncomfortable enough to stop posting the photos altogether. At least nowhere that you can see them.
For Your Friend Whose Loathsome Job Has Taken Over Her Life, and Every Time You See Her, She Looks as Though Her Soul has Been Stolen and She’ll Never Know Happiness Again:
To show them that even a lifeless piece of plastic trapped in a jar can appear to be free and happy. Plus it’s great for distracting yourself when you can’t stand to look at your computer screen a moment longer.
For Your Friend Who is Really Smart and Interesting but Tends to Ramble On and On About Stuff You Don’t Know About or Aren’t Really Interested In and Won’t Take the Hint When You Want Him to Shut Up:
Then he can talk her ear off all the time.
For Your Friend With Pink Hair:
Trust me, she’ll love it. If she’s in college she may deny loving it, but she will secretly love it. Don’t have a friend with Pink Hair? Get one. They’re pretty awesome. In small doses.
For Your Friend Whom You Suspect of Being A Member of a Cult Bent on Resurrecting an Ancient God Who Will Devour the World:
For Your Friend Who Smokes Too Much Pot and Talks About Music and Art in Really Pretentious, Not-Particularly-Insightful Ways, and You’re Starting To Worry That They Have a Problem But Don’t Know How to Talk About It, So You Just Don’t Answer Their Calls:
Cause they will think it is awesome, and while they play with it, you can talk about substance dependency. They’ll be distracted enough that they’ll never look you in the eyes and so it’ll feel like you’re not really talking to them. Or you can just give it to them and include a link to this list. Worse to worse, they get a neat book!
For Your Friend Who Still Talks About Friends (the TV Show) As Though it is Relevant. Or, Your Friend who Quotes Seinfeld A Lot:
Oy, those people, right? Let me guess, you’ve tried getting them into 30 Rock, and they just don’t get into it? Well, that’s their loss, but there is a happy, lesser know alternative. Happy Endings, the Friends of todays 30-somethings. And way funnier. Weird and hilarious but not about the TV industry, so hopefully they’ll get into it. Also good For Your Friend Who Was Just Left at the Altar.
Your Friends (Probably a Couple) Who Host a Games Night, But You Always End Up Playing Monopoly:
You know who I’m talking about. They want the fun, suburban camaraderie of a games night, but don’t actually know much about games, and you sometimes refer to them as your boring friends. That’s okay. Boring can be a good thing (especially if the rest of your life is never ending drama and your roommate locking herself in the bathroom again). But board games don’t have to be boring (insert pun here). Nor do they have to be overly complex geek-a-thons. There are many options: Settlers of Catan, Chez Geek, and Apples to Apples, just to name a few. Those are good ones to get started. It can get even crazier after that, but you’re not their personal fun-coach, are you?
For Your Friend Who Has Disguised Herself As a Man to Enter a Prestigious, but Gender-Exclusive Scientific Academy in Victorian London:
All Men of Genius, by Lev AC Rosen
What? Like you wouldn’t?
For Those Friends You Really a Truly Love More Than Words Can Say:
A Squishable. Seriously. They are the best things ever. Hugging them when you feel sad makes all the sadness go away. And even when you’re not sad, just looking in their adorable eyes and at their hilarious round bodies makes you feel happier than you did. In fact, you should probably just get one for yourself. No one should be without one.
Happy Smugglivus, Lev!